WILMINGTON, N.C. (WECT) - The MV Hyundai Hope made history Wednesday as it became the largest container ship to ever dock at the Port of Wilmington.
The Hyundai Hope has a carrying capacity of 14,000 TEUs, which stands for twenty-foot equivalent units. Basically those are the cargo containers you see along the port as you drive by it in Wilmington.
“This is a monumental milestone for North Carolina Ports, the Port of Wilmington and the entire state of North Carolina. This has been years in the making and seeing our hard work and dedication come to fruition with the arrival of the MV Hyundai Hope is truly something to celebrate,” said Paul J. Cozza, Executive Director, North Carolina Ports. “This would not have been possible without the support of our many partners at the local, state and federal levels as well as funding from the North Carolina General Assembly.”
Port officials credit the completion of four major projections that allowed these massive container ships access to the Port of Wilmington.
Earlier this year, NC Ports completed phase two of its turning basin expansion project; opened 2,600 contiguous feet of container berth space; and completed an air draft improvement project which increased the air draft over the Cape Fear River.
Additionally, the Ports Authority welcomed three neo-Panamax cranes in 2018 and 2019 specifically designed to work ultra-large container vessels.
“This is proof positive that we are big-ship ready and capable of handling some of the largest container vessels calling East Coast ports today,” said Hans C.E. Bean, North Carolina Ports Chief Commercial Officer. “The arrival of a ship of this magnitude to the Port of Wilmington signals to our customers that we are ready to support their growing business needs today and in the future.”